How big a role does perseverence play in the success of artists and writers? In a newsletter from ArtYouGrewUpWith.com, I found this example, a cartoonist named Rupert Fawcett who has done very well with his cartoons about parenthood as well as his more recent "Off the Leash," about people and the dogs who own them. This is what he revealed about how he got started:
I became a professional cartoonist almost by accident when in 1989 whilstdoodling I drew a little bald man in braces and carpet slippers and named him Fred.
After receiving over 80 rejection letters I was finally offered a place in Midweek, a free magazine given away at London tube stations. This was soon followed by my first book deal and a contract for Fredgreeting cards. These proved very popular and within a short period of time were to be seen all overthe place. A range of Fred merchandise followed with a steady succession of books. The cartoons also appeared in the Mail On Sunday for four years.
When my children were small I created a new character, Daddy, which was based on my own experiences of parenthood. Three Daddy books, a greeting card range and merchandise followed.
My most recent creation is Off The Leash, which is a series of cartoon strips about dogs! It's now got a global audience thanks to the likes of Facebook and a beautifiul book release later this year.
The bit that caught my attention was the 80 rejection letters and then the placement of his strip in a giveaway magazine.
How many of us would have given up after 60 rejection letters, or 40, or 20, or even ten?
How many might have scoffed at having their work displayed in a give-away magazine rather than a "real" one?
I don't know, I only know of those who would have done that, none would have gone on to have his success.
Below is one of Fawcett's cartoons. ArtYouGrewUpWith.com is selling limited edition prints of some of his work:
(One key to success is using your time effectively. For some friendly guidance and right-brain methods, see my book, "Focus: use the power of targeted thinking to get more done," published by Pearson and available from Amazon or your other favorite bookseller now.)